Jan Frankel Schau, Esq.



Jan Frankel Schau, Esq. is one of the leading mediators in the industry, named by the Daily Journal as one of the 50 “Top Neutrals” in California and admitted as a Distinguished Fellow by the prestigious International Academy of Mediators.  With over 15 years experience as a full time neutral, she has the expertise and experience to settle the most challenging of cases.

Ms. Schau focuses on mediating litigated cases arising out of employment, business, real estate and tort disputes. With over twenty years of experience as a litigator – 10 years in Insurance Defense and 10 years representing Plaintiffs in employment, business and personal injury – Jan has an unique ability to understand and evaluate both sides of every claim.


  • 2007-Present  ADR Services, Inc., Mediator & Arbitrator, Panel Neutral
  • 2006-Present  Civil Service Hearing Officer, Los Angeles Unified School District
  • 2005-Present  Civil Service Hearing Officer, County of Los Angeles
  • 2006-Present  Civil Service Hearing Officer, City of Los Angeles
  • 2000-2007      Private Mediator, Arbitrator, Valley Mediation Services
  • 1995-2001        Law Offices of Jan Frankel Schau, General Civil Litigation
  • 1981-1995         Litigation Practice at various Law Firms in Los Angeles – Condominium and Homeowners Law, Real Property Sales, Construction Defect, Insurance Defense, Coverage, Personal Injury, Employment, Business, Hospital Staff Privileges, Professional Negligence and Torts Litigation


  • Distinguished Fellow of the International Academy of Mediators
  • Top 50 Neutral in California Daily Journal
  • Past Chair, Beverly Hills Bar Association, Labor & Employment Section
  • California Super Lawyer in Alternative Dispute Resolution annually since 2007
  • Past Board Member, Women Lawyers of Los Angeles, ADR Section Chair
  • Past Member, California State Bar Committee on ADR
  • Past President, Southern California Mediation Association
  • Past Chair, ADR Section, San Fernando Valley Bar Association, Board Member


  • Loyola Law School, J.D. (1981)
  • Pomona College, B.A. in International Relations (1978)
  • Inglewood High School (1974)


  • Appointed Adjunct Faculty at the Straus Institute of Dispute Resolution, Pepperdine University, Professor in “Mediation Skills and Theory”
  • Lecturer, “Micro-Interventions in Mediation”, International Academy of Mediators, AMINZ, Wellington, New Zealand
  • Beverly Hills Bar Association, “Your Employment Case is in Arbitration: Now What?” Panel Member
  • Eastern Bar Association, “Negotiation Ethics and Confidentiality”
  • Orange County Bar Association: “Looking at Substance Abuse Through a Different Lens”
  • Beverly Hills Bar Association, Barristers, “Top 12 Tips for Negotiating Anything”


  • Straus Institute, Pepperdine University, Summer Intensive: “Advanced Negotiation Skills and Theory”
  • Straus Institute, Pepperdine University, Summer Intensive: “Mindfulness in Mediation”
  • Professional Skills Advanced Training Straus Institute, Pepperdine University
  • EEOC Training, 40 hour Course
  • Arbitration I and II, American Arbitration Association
  • FINRA Neutral Training
  • County Personnel Hearing Officer Training
  • Western Center for Law & Disability, Advanced Training, Disability Mediation
  • Los Angeles County Bar Association, Dispute Resolution Program Act ADR Training


  • “Add OODA Loop to Your Mediation Strategy”, Los Angeles Daily Journal
  • “The Tail that Wags the Dog: Strategies for Overcoming Barriers to Settlement, Especially Attorneys’ Fees When They Become an Issue”, Advocate Magazine (CAALA)
  • “In Defense of Mediation Confidentiality”, Los Angeles Daily Journal
  • “Move Mountains in the Workplace with Mediation”, Los Angeles Daily Journal
  • “When Investigation Reports Meet Mediation: A Mediator’s View”, Association of Workplace Investigators, Inc.
  • “Six Ways in which Mediators Don’t Lie”, Los Angeles Lawyer, Closing Argument


  • View from the Middle of the Road: A Mediator’s Perspective on Life, Conflict and Human Interaction. (AuthorHouse, 2013)
  • “The Bad Boy Who Almost Got Away”, “Stories Mediators Tell”, Editors, Eric Galton and Lela Love, Published by ABA (2012)


Representative Cases


  • Arbitration of sexual abuse by co-worker (against employer)
  • Sexual harassment: allegation of supervisor attempted sexual abuse with defense of consensual affair in restaurant setting
  • Age discrimination: long time manager replaced by younger person in alleged reduction in force at major automotive center
  • Wage and hour: 6 restaurant workers alleging violation of meal and rest breaks
  • Wage and hour: arbitration of overtime and meal and rest break violations against major retail chain
  • Partnership dispute between brothers/owners of insurance business
  • Male victim of sexual violation by male supervisor/executive following a holiday party
  • Overtime claim and retaliation for complaining against a studio executive after being transferred out of state
  • Wrongful termination of long-time disabled teacher whose contract was not renewed after a full year on disability before the next academic year began
  • Race discrimination alleged against an African-American owned security company
  • Wrongful termination in retaliation for whistleblowing against a large, national Charitable organization
  • Wrongful termination based upon age discrimination brought by a Sheriff against a governmental agency
  • Pregnancy and gender discrimination brought against a major engineering firm where the Plaintiff was in an extreme minority as a woman

view all


  • 52-year old Vietnamese CPA “downsized” alleging age & ethnic discrimination.
  • Lesbian woman executive over 40 sued government agency for wrongful termination and discrimination; defenses included wrongdoing at work regarding protecting her lover’s employment.
  • Several cases involving disabled employees suing employers (including governmental entities) for wrongful termination in retaliation for taking time off for disability.
  • Two Hispanic executives claiming ethnic discrimination and wrongful termination at an agricultural manufacturing company.
  • “Failure to accommodate” claim against school district by deaf school teacher.
  • Wrongful termination from pregnancy, and other pregnancy discrimination matters.
  • Wrongful termination/discrimination on the basis of gender orientation.
  • Wrongful termination against a major charitable organization based on a claim of age discrimination.
  • Misclassification and overtime by a marketing agent who had an oral contract to represent a physician but claimed to be an employee who worked independently many hours without compensation as an employee over a period of years.
  • Disability discrimination based upon replacement of a long-time employee suffering from stress after one year’s leave of absence.
  • In-house employment grievance against public carrier for refusal to grant a bonus in the customary amount based upon a finding that the team on which he worked had falsified documentation at the direction of a supervisor.
  • Wage and hour claim brought by a ranch hand who lived on the ranch full time and did not document hours in any way.
  • Gender discrimination by a young woman against an older female supervisor on grounds that the older supervisor did not permit younger (or any) women to show their “feminine side”/emotions at work resulting in multiple complaints and a constructive discharge.
  • Age discrimination against a major tech company for wrongful termination of a 58 year old woman with 17 years experience by her 32 year old supervisor.
  • rongful termination in pregnancy discrimination based upon termination after 4 months leave of absence prior to delivery and then a requested 4 months baby bonding time.
  • Current employee brings claim for retaliation for complaints of failure to engage in the interactive process against County.

view all

Wrongful Termination

  • Wrongful termination in violation of executive compensation agreement.
  • Wrongful termination based upon foreign ancestry.
  • Wrongful termination based on immigration status.
  • Wrongful termination against a public entity based upon civil rights investigation.
  • Wrongful termination following allegedly inaccurate positive drug test.
  • Major litigation against governmental entity for wrongful termination in violation of public policy as a result of controller reporting money management violations on a major construction project.

view all


  • Veterinarian who alleged wrongful termination in retaliation for reporting violations regarding animal care practices.
  • Religious discrimination.
  • Pregnancy discrimination.
  • Major litigation against public entity for demotion of high level police officer in retaliation for whistleblowing.
  • Wrongful termination in retaliation for bringing lawsuit against co-franchisee.
  • Retaliation for bringing lawsuits previously against major communications provider.
  • Wrongful failure to hire in retaliation for recurrence of cancer (as litigator).

view all

Wage & Hour

  • Hispanic dishwashers who alleged wage & hour violations against restaurant. Defenses included claim that one woman was the victim of domestic violence and therefore took refuge at the restaurant, even while not working.
  • Mulit-party wage and hour against a national retail chain.
  • Construction laborers alleged they were retaliated against based upon complaints of failure to comply with wage & hour requirements on a construction project.
  • Wage & hour case against employer of “domestic”, including “slavery” allegations.

Torts & Personal Injury

  • Legal Malpractice arising out of alleged bad advice in drafting will, resulting in substantial and avoidable tax consequences to heirs.
  • Legal malpractice arising out of failure to ensure confidentiality in the settlement of an employment dispute—resulting in the employee/Plaintiff’s having a negative employment record.
  • Auto v Auto where personal injury belatedly discovered and minimal insurance policy only available.
  • Auto v Auto where defense disputed causation of the injury alleged by a young woman who was an attorney for the insurance company who insured the adverse driver.
  • Defamation where a woman claimed her reputation had been harmed by a false posting on social media regarding her personal extra-marital affairs.
  • Legal malpractice and Fee dispute arising out of a divorce with allegations of over-charging without achieving desired result.
  • Dog bite.
  • Motor vehicle.
  • Defamation.
  • Business torts, including trade secret and unfair competition.
  • Wrongful death of young woman who took her own life after allegedly being discharged prematurely from a residential treatment facility, resulting in a multi-million dollar settlement.
  • School yard battery arising out of alleged lack of proper security.
  • Traumatic injury to adult arising out of bicycle accident on public property.
  • Sexual assault and battery as well as emotional distress against a theme park for the alleged touching of a member of the public by an employee in a seasonal “fun house”.

view all


  • Air conditioning manufacturer v. auto sales establishment who claimed they loaned equipment which was neither returned nor paid for during the repair on the auto company’s equipment, resulting in substantial interest and penalties.
  • Franchisor v. Franchisee dispute regarding marketing assistance and franchise fees.
  • Breach of contract for alleged unlawful copying of jewelry design for retail sales.
  • Sales of Business and Lease which was allegedly based upon fraudulent accounting.

Real Estate

  • Neighbor/neighbor dispute where elderly neighbor claims abutting neighbor has destroyed her right to light, air and security by allowing their hedges to grow beyond the city ordinance (pre-litigation).
  • Commercial landlord and tenant dispute arising out of permissible use of parking area adjacent to leased property.
  • Alleged misrepresentation of square footage on residential real estate against owner and broker.
  • Construction defects and financial overruns on public works project.
  • Residential real estate sales transaction arising ut of allegations of fraudulent misrepresentation as to lot line.

Product Liability

  • Home Products including Subrogation.
  • Brain injury due to hypoxia allegedly resulting from cosmetic surgery.
  • Accounting Malpractice resulting in legal defense costs in business action.

Civil Rights

  • Use of excessive force by police resulting in gun shot to leg of convicted felon.
  • Use of excessive force by police and alleging false imprisonment for gang-related congregating.
  • Wrongful arrest of youth for possession of marijuana with medical prescription.


  • Jan Schau also serves as an Arbitrator through ADR Services, American Arbitration Association and Kaiser Permanente. A sampling of arbitrated matters includes:

    • Wrongful Termination in retaliation for Whistleblowing
    • Wrongful Termination in Retaliation for reporting Sexual Harassment
    • Breach of Revolving Credit Card Debt
    • Wrongful Death of an Infant in Hospital (Medical Malpractice)
    • Pre-litigation real estate sales transaction
    • Auto v Auto (and Subrogation)

Articles / Publications